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Report: Browns were 10 seconds from drafting Teddy Bridgewater over Johnny Manziel

Johnny Manziel Cleveland Browns

How certain were the Cleveland Browns that Johnny Manziel was their guy when they traded up to the No. 22 spot in the first round of the draft? That depends on who you ask.

According to Tony Grossi of ESPNCleveland.com, there is a “story going around” that Browns general manager Ray Farmer was about to select Teddy Bridgewater with the 22nd pick when team owner Jimmy Haslam stepped in at the last second.

A source told me that the card prepared to be given to Commissioner Roger Goodell for the official announcement in Radio City Music Hall originally had Bridgewater’s name on it. Then with 10 seconds to go, a new card replaced it with the name of Johnny Manziel, as a result of owner Jimmy Haslam’s order.

Browns spokesman Zak Gilbert told Grossi that he was in the draft room and that never happened. Farmer reiterated that Haslam did not force the Browns’ football people into making any decisions on draft day.

“I can tell you with 100 percent certainty that Jimmy Haslam at no point demanded, requested or tried to influence the process in any way,” Farmer said. “He definitely asked questions. He’ll definitely give his opinion of what he thinks and all of those things are fine, but at the end of the day he trusted the football staff to make the decisions that we thought were the right decisions for this football team.”

There has been little to no buzz surrounding the Browns over the past several years, so you can understand why Haslam would have wanted to pick Manziel. He’s also a very good football player who brings a winning attitude. Plus, Haslam said a homeless person convinced him to draft Manziel when he was out to dinner days before the draft. There’s no way the change was made with 10 seconds left on the clock, right?

H/T The Big Lead

Homeless person convinced Jimmy Haslam to draft Johnny Manziel

Johnny Manziel Cleveland Browns

What if I told you that a homeless person is the reason the Cleveland Browns selected Johnny Manziel? Would you believe it? Well that’s the story ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio was selling to viewers.

After the Browns traded up four spots to take Manziel at No. 22 overall in the draft, Paolantonio shared a story about what convinced team owner Jimmy Haslam to draft the Heisman Trophy winner.

As SalPal shared, Haslam can go out to dinner in his home state of Tennessee without being bothered. But when he goes out in Cleveland, he hears from the fans constantly. And it was the words of one particular person that convinced Haslam that he had to have Manziel.

[Video: Manziel and Nick Saban share awkward handshake at draft]

“I was out to dinner recently, and a homeless person was out on the street,” Paolantonio says Haslam told him. The homeless person “looked up at me on the street and said: draft Manziel.”

According to Paolantonio, that convinced Haslam that the Cleveland Browns fans wanted Manziel.

And you know, whenever the fans tell you to do something, you ALWAYS listen. Because they’re the experts and you’re not. Especially homeless people. They do a better job breaking down film than anyone in an NFL scouting department.

Also see: Johnny Manziel goes stag, no girlfriend at NFL Draft